Meet the 5450

As luck would have it, we ran in to a bit of a snafu yesterday morning when wrapping up our test of the 5450. As we stated in our intro, the DDR3 Radeon 5450 is supposed to be clocked at 650MHz core and 800MHz memory, but that’s not what we got. Internally AMD has been sampling a 650MHz/900MHz card for one of the OEMs they work with, and a few of those samples made it out with the 650MHz/800MHz review samples for the press. As one of the (un)lucky winners, we received a 650MHz/900MHz sample, meaning our card isn’t quite a reference card. Thankfully we have more than one 5450 and we were able to benchmark a stock-clocked Sapphire card, but keep in mind a proper built-to-reference card is going to be equipped with slightly different RAM than our sample is. Besides the RAM chips, everything else about our sample is the same as a reference card.

With that out of the way, the 5450 is intended to be a replacement for both the Radeon 4350 and the Radeon 4550. The former was AMD’s previous low-profile card, while the latter was the DDR3 equipped version. Thus we have something similar in size and power usage as the 4350, but packing the “complete” abilities of the chip like 4550.

The 5450 AMD is sampling is the 512MB DDR3 version, for which the reference clocks are 650MHz core, 800MHz (1600MHz data rate) memory, and a 64bit bus giving it 12.8GB/sec of memory bandwidth. There will also be 5450s released using DDR2 (which unfortunately will share the 5450 name), and AMD tells us that vendors have the option of equipping their cards with either 512MB or 1GB of memory. So we’re potentially going to see 4 different 5450 configurations, with the possibility of 1-2 more if any vendors go ahead and build 900MHz DDR3 cards for public purchase.

The reference 5450 is a low-profile card, measuring 6.61” long (the same as the 5670). The low 19.1 TDP means that it can be passively cooled, and as such AMD has equipped it with a double-wide heatsink. This differs slightly from the 4350, where the reference card was actively cooled and the vendor cards were almost entirely passively cooled. There is a 2pin fan header near the back of the card to allow active cooling, but we aren’t immediately expecting anyone to go that route.

The card is equipped with 4 Samsung DDR3 900MHz RAM chips, 2 on the front and 2 on the rear. Note that the 900MHz RAM chips are an artifact due to the fact that this is the wrong sample card. A regular DDR3 5450 such as our Sapphire card would be equipped with 800MHz RAM chips instead.

Anyone hoping to push a bit more out of the 5450 is going to find themselves disappointed when it comes to pure reference cards. AMD has disabled Overdrive by default on these cards, leaving it up to the card vendor to decide if they want to offer it or not.

Finally, since the 5450 is a low-profile card, we have yet another variant in the port configuration. Our sample card is equipped with 1 DVI port and 1 DisplayPort directly on the card, and a VGA port on the bracket attached to the card via cable. The 5450 – like all other 5000-series cards – supports 3-monitor Eyefinity, so all 3 ports can be used at once, although the VGA port is obviously going to make it less desirable here.

We should note that only cards with a DisplayPort will support Eyefinity, which means that if a vendor decides to equip the card with an HDMI port instead, they have to give up Eyefinity to do so. We expect to see some cards with HDMI for the HTPC crowd, but at this point we don’t have any idea as to how many there will be. DVI-to-HDMI adaptors still work here, so we may see vendors spend a bit more money and go that route instead.

Index Meet the Sapphire 5450
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  • Purri - Monday, March 08, 2010 - link

    Ok, so i read a lot of comments that the cheap passive DP-Adapters wont work for a EyeFinity 3 Monitor setup.

    But, can i use this card for a 3 monitor windows-desktop setup without eyefinity - or do i need an expensive adapter for this too?

    I'm looking for a cheapish, passivly(silent) cooled card that supports 3 monitors for windows applications, that has enough performance to play a few old games now and then (like quake3) on 1 monitor.

    Will this card work?
    Reply
  • waqarshigri - Wednesday, December 04, 2013 - link

    yes of course it has amd eyefinity technology .... i played new games on it like nfs run,call of duty MW3, battlefield 3, Reply
  • plopke - Friday, February 05, 2010 - link

    :o what about the 5830 , wasn't it delayed until the 5th. It is suddenly very quiet about it on all techsite. And not launched today. Reply
  • yyrkoon - Thursday, February 04, 2010 - link

    Your charts are all buggered up. Just looking over the charts, in Crysis: Warhead, you test the nvidia 9600GT for performance. Ok fine. Then we move a long to the Power consumption charts, and you omit the 9600GT for the 9500GT ? Better still, we move to both heat tests, and both of these card are omitted.

    WTH ?! Come on guys, is there something wrong with a bit of consistency ?
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Friday, February 05, 2010 - link

    Some of those cards are out of Anand's personal collection, and I don't have a matching card. We have near-identical hardware that produces the same performance numbers; however we can't replicate the power/noise/temperature data due to differences in cases and environment.

    So I can put his cards in our performance tests, but I can't use his cards for power/temp/noise testing. It's not perfect, but it allows us to bring you the most data we can.
    Reply
  • yyrkoon - Friday, February 05, 2010 - link

    Well, the only real gripe that I have here is that I actually own a 9600GT. Since we moved last year, and are completely off grid ( solar / wind ), I would have liked to compare power consumption between the two. Without having to actually buy something to find out.

    Oh well, nothing can be done about it now I suppose.

    I can say however that a 9600GT in a P35 system with a Core 2 E6550, 4GB of ram, and 4 Seagate barracudas uses ~167-168W idle. While gaming, the most CPU/GPU intensive games for me were world in conflict, and Hellgate: London. The two games "sucked down" 220-227W at the wall. This system was also moderately over clocked to get the memory and "FSB" at 1:1. Also these numbers are pretty close, but not super accurate, But as close as I can come eyeballing a kill-a-watt while trying to create a few numbers. The power supply was an 80Plus 500W variant. Manufactured by Seasonic if anyone must know( Antec EarthWATTS 500 ).
    Reply
  • yyrkoon - Friday, February 05, 2010 - link

    Ah I forgot. The numbers I gave for the "complete" system at the wall included powering a 19" WS LCD that consistently uses 23W. Reply
  • dagamer34 - Thursday, February 04, 2010 - link

    Where's the low-profile 5650?? I don't want to downgrade my 4650 to a 5450 just for HD bitstreaming. =/ Reply
  • Roy2001 - Thursday, February 04, 2010 - link

    Video game is on XBOX360 and Wii, so i3-530 for $117 is a better solution for me. It supports bitstream through HDMI too. My 2 cents. Reply
  • Taft12 - Thursday, February 04, 2010 - link

    I apologize if this has been confirmed already, but does this mean we won't see a chip from ATI that falls between 5450 and 5670?

    There were four GPUs in this range last gen (4350, 4550, 4650, 4670)
    Reply

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